LSU baseball

LSU baseball final tuneup against UMass Lowell before SEC play begins

Kristian Garic
March 06, 2020 - 8:26 am

LSU baseball is in fix it mode right now. The Tigers are not by any stretch ready for show time product.  This weekend’s series with the University of Massachusetts, Lowell will serve as the team’s final tuneup before SEC play begins next week. 

The Tigers are near the bottom of the SEC in nearly every offensive category.   LSU is hitting a poultry .235, good for last in the conference.  Just to put it in perspective, the SEC is comprised of 14 teams. LSU is second to last in slugging percentage at .364, just ahead of Mississippi State.  Tennessee leads the conference in slugging with an eye popping .560 slugging percentage. 

Let’s continue…the Bayou Bengals are second to last in the conference in on base percentage.   Paul Mainieiri’s squad scored just 64 runs this season, compared to SEC leader Tennessee with 153 runs. 

Why is LSU struggling at the plate?  The low hanging fruit answer, would be the newly minted hitting coach Eddie Smith.  Well maybe, but I would simply put their offensive struggles on the players.  Considering six out of nine starting players are newcomers to the team; youth is the better answer as to why the Tigers are struggling at the plate.  LSU hitters have to take a better approach at the plate. 

Here is the fix.  Ready?  Get to the plate and hunt the fastball early in the count.  When you see one...swing. Lay off the junk early in counts.  That’s easier said than done, but the good’s correctable.  The young hitters will eventually realize they can’t do anything with that exploding slider early in the count. 

On the flip side, the Tigers pitching has been outstanding with a team ERA of 2.50, good for fourth best in the SEC.  Opposing hitters are batting just .184 against the LSU pitching staff so far this season.  The only cause for concern in the Tigers pitching staff is, will they get the run support needed to win games?

Forget UMass Lowell this weekend.  The Tigers need to have a good weekend at the plate to have a fighting chance next weekend in the SEC opener against Ole Miss. 

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